SUGGESTED VERSES FOR MEMORIZATION & MEDITATION
But he lingered. So the men seized him and his wife and his two daughters by the hand, the LORD being merciful to him, and they brought him out and set him outside the city. (Genesis 19:16)
So it was that, when God destroyed the cities of the valley, God remembered Abraham and sent Lot out of the midst of the overthrow when he overthrew the cities in which Lot had lived. (Genesis 19:29)
Then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials, and to keep the unrighteous under punishment until the day of judgment. (2 Peter 2:9)
Though we have primarily focused upon Abraham’s walk with God throughout this series, last week took a slight detour as we saw Abraham interceding to God on behalf of the city of Sodom. We have heard Sodom mentioned in previous chapters. Lot, Abraham’s nephew, went to live in Sodom in chapter 13. Abraham rescued Lot and speaks to Sodom’s king in chapter 14. We were also told multiple times that Sodom was an evil city. Finally, at the end of chapter 18, God announced that He was going to judge Sodom and the surrounding cities. Abraham entreated before God for the righteous people of the cities, asking the LORD to spare Sodom if He is able to find ten righteous persons. God agrees then continues onward to judge the wicked.
Our present text begins with two angels coming into Sodom and meeting Lot. Like any good host, Lot invites them into his house; however, the men of the city are intent on being less kind of the angels. We see the depravity of humanity as the men desperately try to seize the angels and continue to do so even when they are stricken with blindness. The angels announce to Lot the destruction of the city and plead with him to flee. Lot lingers, and in a stunning display of mercy, the angels physically drag Lot out of Sodom. God annihilates Sodom, and the text ends with a strange narrative of Lot and his two daughters.
Even though this chapter is large and filled with a lot of details, we can boil its message down to two points: the mercy and the judgment of God. The LORD’s righteous judgment is shown in his dealing with the city. Sodom is a hostile city that preys upon, abuses, and exploits travelers (who were already quite vulnerable in the ancient world). God’s judgment is just. But we also see His great mercy for Lot. Though Lot does nothing to warrant such grace, God literally pulls Lot from the fire of judgment. Though it might sound hard to believe, the story of Lot’s rescue is also the story of every Christian. We too have only been saved because God was merciful enough to snatch us from the fire.
Read verses 1-11 and discuss the following.
- The wickedness of the men of Sodom is quite evident from these verses and should come as no surprise to us since God is planning to destroy them. However, Lot’s attempted compromise by offering up his daughters is both shocking and unimaginable. Why do we, at times, try to negotiate or compromise with sin? What is the danger of doing so?
Read verses 12-23 and discuss the following.
- Verse 16 tells us that Lot lingered even though the city’s destruction was imminent, but God was merciful to him by having the angels practically drag him out of the city. Have you experienced the tendency to linger in sin? How is God being forceful with us at times actually a display of His mercy toward us? How is God’s rescuing of Lot similar to our own story of salvation?
Read verses 24-29 and discuss the following.
- When Lot’s wife looked back, she revealed that she was torn between following after Lot or after Sodom; therefore, God transformed her into a monument of disobedience. What does this show us about God’s tolerance of a divided heart?
Read verses 30-38 and discuss the following.
- Lot’s decisions both to live in Sodom and Zoar greatly affected his daughters, causing them to become desperate for bearing children, which led them into sin. What does this reveal to us about the consequences of our actions? Do we ever sin in insolation?
ACTIONS TO CONSIDER
- Recall the mercy of God in saving you from His judgment. Thank the LORD in prayer that in Christ you do not need to fear suffering the wrath of God.
- Consider whether or not you still have a lingering desire for sin. If so, repent to the LORD and resolve to submit yourself completely to God and His will.